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Knox Ave. Chicago, IL visart ameritech. It will encourage a more vibrant and productive climate for our economic future. Academic institutions, research institutes, private industry, and government are enjoined to link together in cooperative efforts.
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Special emphasis will also be given to archaeological, anthropological, and historical research. We should foster studies that delve into our ancient roots and help us define our past more clearly; in this connection, we should give more funds and more powers to the National Museum so that it can develop an institution of which we can all be proud. The solution to the problem of increasing prices undoubtedly deserves a high place in our priorities. However, it will serve no one to regard the problem with less than a clear mind and an honest purpose.
We have in fact increased production—6. The need to provide the government with better instruments for dealing with supply shortages was revealed again in This was largely responsible for the increase of over 23 in the consumer price index. Some traders also apparently took unwarranted advantage of the situation to increase their margins. Export prices were depressed in relation to other prices. Also last year, the Price Control Council was reestablished by law to prevent monopoly, hoarding, injurious speculation, manipulation and profiteering with respect to the supply and marketing of commodities.
The Council has waged a vigorous campaign against profiteers, blackmarketeers, hoarders, and speculators. It has also prevented what could have been the spiraling of the prices of petroleum products, textiles, textbooks, school supplies, milk, drugs, and construction materials. The task of the Council continues this year.
We can, and should, produce all the rice and corn our people and our industries need. But government cannot always foresee nor can it always quickly offset the destructive effects of natural calamities, such as those wrought by typhoons and diseases which ruin standing crops. The havoc wrought by the typhoons of resulted in a severe rice shortage in , so that the country had to resume rice importations anew after having been self-sufficient for the three previous years.
The conflicts that broke out in Cotabato in December of continued through , thus drastically reducing rice and corn production in one of the major rice bowls of the country. Moreover, the rains that came in the wake of the typhoons cut corn production severely, resulting in a soaring of corn prices.
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This, in turn, led to a shift to rice by the corn-eating population, thus artificially increasing the demand for rice at a time when supply was already short. Political hysteria in election year further aggravated the situation by encouraging panic-buying and hoarding. The net result was a steep rise in the price of rice immediately preceding the elections in November, although this was followed by a price decline shortly thereafter.
As if this were not bad enough, an outbreak of the dreaded tungro disease hit the main rice crop unexpectedly towards the end of the year, resulting in drastic production declines in Central Luzon and a few other parts of the country.
Coupled with the typhoons and a continuation of the Cotabato strife, the rice plague means additional importations in , despite an intensified rice production program which has already been mounted. To alleviate the rice shortage and to restore the country once more to self-sufficiency, I have taken the following emergency steps. This should provide farmers with the additional funds required for the higher-priced farm inputs brought about by the floating rate. For the main crop that is planted in mid-year , we intend to mobilize a total of about P million in additional credits from different sources.
Second, I have instructed the RCA to use about P million, generated from our long-term credit purchases of rice, for a price-support program for palay. This should assure our farmers of a sure market for their palay at a profit, thus encouraging increased production. Third, the Bureau of Plant Industry—acting on my orders—has launched a seed-production drive to produce tungro -resistant seed varieties to replace the nonresistant varieties.
This, together with a massive agricultural information campaign now being conducted by our 4, farm technicians, should prevent any recurrence of the rice disease for this year. Fourth, we are redoubling our efforts to irrigate more rice lands. Altogether, this should place about 50, more hectares under irrigation this year.
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I also ask Congress to provide sufficient funds to this new agency and to the entire rice industry lest we perpetuate our insufficiency in rice. While these steps are being taken, we have already contracted for more rice abroad—largely on the basis of long-term credit—in order to assure our people of sufficient rice for their needs this year. This should tide us over this critical period. Fortunately, not all was bleak in agriculture.
While rice overshadowed all other developments, we did forge ahead in many agricultural fields. World prices, however, fell sharply in the face of this substantial increase in exports. We are now therefore vigorously engaged in opening up new markets—including Mainland China and Eastern Communist Countries—for our increased production in order to stabilize world market prices for coconut oil and copra.
We have accelerated our fish production program. Additional credit, a much-expanded fishery extension force and additional cold storage and marketing facilities enabled us to produce considerably more fish in than in previous years. We have even begun to export modest but growing quantities of shrimp and other marine products because of this accelerated program.
We dispersed some 4, heads of cattle, 4, heads of swine, and , ducklings in This will result in the rapid upgrading of our local livestock breeds and in the revitalization of our waning duck industry. We also launched, for the first time in our history, a milk-production program designed to offset the vastly increased prices of milk and milk products in the world market. The only real answer to increased world prices, as you all know, is to produce the commodity ourselves in order to be less vulnerable to the economic policies of other countries.
This we have started to do in this vital commodity—milk. As deep as the hunger for food is the hunger for land. We took giant strides in satisfying this hunger in as a result of a massive land distribution drive. Our Bureau of Lands last year issued 50, land patents to small settlers compared to 32, the year previous.
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This represented an increase of fully Our mining and oil exploitation sectors received new boosts from the government last year. We provided credit and other forms of assistance to our nickel projects. We formulated new and liberal guidelines designed to attract badly needed foreign investment into the oil exploration industry. We began to explore the possibility of new markets for our copper concentrates in the light of a sudden drop in world copper prices. Even now, we are seriously studying the economic feasibility of establishing our own copper smelting facilities to protect our copper industry.
One of the most important things that we did in was to establish, after careful studies, the basis for a truly effective forest conservation program. A Presidential Committee on Wood Industry Development, which I created in March of last year with private sector representatives, recommended sweeping reforms in our forestry and conservation policies. In this field too, we will need legislation to institutionalize the recommended reforms. I recommend to Congress the bill that we are now preparing in order to conserve our forest patrimony for our generations to come.
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Unless we take drastic steps now, we will have reached the point of irreversible descent by At that point, it will be too late to prevent our rich country from becoming a wasteland. This period saw marked advances in the areas of export trade, tourism, cooperatives, and consumer protection. Export earnings in manufacturers alone showed remarkable increase, after the adoption of the new exchange rate policy. Although we continue to gain from our recent efforts, developments due to factors not within our control—the international monetary crisis, unfavorable prices for our exports in world markets, strikes in U.
This was attributed largely to the sales of copper concentrates, pineapple in syrup, molasses, plywood, desiccated coconut, and bananas. We would have had a better trade performance on our side if we did not have to import rice and corn in The Department of Commerce and Industry revitalized its commercial intelligence corps; provided a better market structure for the smooth geographical movements of goods and services; and aligned its export promotion program with that of the United Nations Development Program.
UNDP has committed itself to assist us in this effort. Realizing that tourism is vital to our economy, we have given it a special emphasis. The DCI is perfecting a plan which would promote tourism in other countries with the help of foreign-based marketing organizations.
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The target includes the estimated , Filipino nationals in the United States. This program also calls for the improvement and modernization of entry facilities into our country, at air and major seaports, tourist plants, amusement centers, and recreational parks, and the removal of tax problems that deter Filipinos from coming to their own country either as tourists, investors, returning residents, or plain visitors. With the tragic fire that caught the Manila International Airport last weekend, the rehabilitation of tourism facilities requires high priority for airport development.
During fiscal year , some nonagricultural cooperatives were registered as against for fiscal year , thereby increasing the number of registered cooperatives to 4, as of June 30, For fiscal year , credit union led the number of registration with its , followed by consumer cooperatives with For the first half of FY , an additional cooperatives were registered, bringing the total registration to 5, as of December 31, We have likewise placed emphasis on the regulation of business enterprises engaged in the sale of goods vital to national growth.
Primers on fair trade laws and practices were disseminated and seminars and lecture forums were conducted in the different parts of the country. The performance of the Department of Finance last year was impressive. Increases were registered not only in the revenue collections of both the Bureau of Internal Revenue and the Bureau of Customs but also in the cash balances in the Bureau of Treasury, in the rate of repayments of public debt, and in the assessments and collections of real property taxes. The BIR last year realized a gross collection exceeding the P3 billion marks, representing an increase of The net collection on the other hand for fiscal year was P1, million or an increase of P million or The corresponding net collection for the same period July 1 to December 31, was P million, an increase of P million or The Bureau of Customs had a gross collection of P1, million for calendar year , representing an increase of P million or A comparison on the fiscal year basis shows that collections by the Bureau in fiscal year were P1, million, representing an increase of P million or Collection for the first semester of the current fiscal year was P million which, compared to that of the first semester of the last fiscal year P million , shows an increase of P million or On December 31, , the cash balance was P,49 million, showing an increase of P Assessments of taxable real properly in provinces and cities as of June 30, , add up to P The increased collection of the Bureau has been made possible by the collection through banks which has reduced substantially the issuance of fake receipts by unscrupulous persons; grouping of internal revenue examination by industries; extensive use of collection and assessment data prepared by electronic data processing; improvement of tax audit methods of examination and investigation of internal revenue taxes; collection of delinquent accounts through R.
Among the more successful of these programs is the progressive car manufacturing program. In particular, Ford Motors of the United States has indicated a strong preference for the Philippines as the site of a pioneering car manufacturing program for the Southeast Asia region. Such bold investment decisions, in response to a climate of confidence that has been engendered, will undoubtedly speed up the industrialization of our country.
Industrial investment took place in the form of expansion of capacities both in exports and the domestic market industries.
Imports of industrial machinery for this purpose exceeded levels. Construction is also going on in Bukidnon of a plant to manufacture high-grade paper from abaca, which will represent an entirely new utilization in the Philippines of a traditional raw material export and stimulate the whole abaca industry.